Project: Sr Little League dirt plan

Dirt Maintenance Proposal
for a Sr. Little League Baseball Field
 
Improve a Senior Little League Field's Dirt Areas
 

Increase the safety and playability for the senior baseball field
1. Eliminate the 4 foot wide buildup at the infield dirt and outfield grass edge.
2. Eliminate the 1 foot wide raised area around the perimeter of the infield turf.
3. Build safe and durable infield mound and batter’s boxes.
4. Improve infield dirt areas for competitive quality footing and bounces.
5. Since we have the equipment, we could also fix the base cutouts on the minor A field and roll the infield dirt on the minor A and little major fields to firm them up.

The deliveries required:
1. A transfer (truck and trailer load approx 25 yards) of baseball infield mix that is 50% clay and 50% red lava dust
2. Tractor with a bucket and rear tiller
3. Lawn core aerator
4. Sod cutter
5. 1.5 ton or 3 ton steam roller
6. 200-400 unfired clay bricks from Muddox

Tools, supplies, equipment, and manpower needed:
• Shovels, rakes
• Fertilizer spreader
• Gloves
• Drag mats
• Sprinklers and hoses
• Push mower
• ATV or riding mower to pull the drag mats
• Gas
• Tools: 200ft measuring tape, hammer, spike, tamp, string, marking spray paint,
• 8 or more workers
• Access to sprinkler box/timer
• Sprinkler marker flags
• A couple bags of powdered clay from Muddox


Before we start this baseball field project:
1. Ensure we will have access through the parking lot and through the right field gate for equipment and dirt delivery. We will need access to the field tools and the hose.
2. We need to work with the park folks to turn on the sprinklers just past the cutout so we can mark them with white or orange paint. I think they are out past the hump we want to remove, but we need to make sure. That way we don’t run over them or cut into them.
3. Order a transfer (truck and trailer) of baseball dirt from Cascade Rock. Get estimated cost.
4. We need a tractor with a bucket and rear tiller. The bucket will spread dirt and scrape the infield hump. Rear tiller will help scarify the old dirt and mix in the new dirt so it bonds. Ideally we need a 1.5 ton or 3 ton steamroller. Check on delivery and pickup dates and times – weekends?
5. We need an aerator and sod cutter. Where can we get these?
6. Find out if any one uses the junior field on Sunday.
7. Make sure we have a place to dispose of sod and dirt scraps.
8. Find out what kind of dirt is under the sod hump. Is it topsoil or baseball dirt?
9. Check height of mound compared to grass height just in front of the mound. Is it 10 ½ inches?
10. Arrange for food and drinks for the work day.
11. If we cut a larger infield dirt area, will we be able to drag it properly and water that far? Do we have a hose that reaches? More to hand drag is more work. OK?

The day before we work:
1. The evening before: moisten the dirt area. No puddles.
2. Mark the cutout line in the grass.
3. Could even aerate all the turf areas also and cut the outer line.

The work day
Flag the sprinklers. We don’t want to hit any of them.

Improving the baseball infield dirt area
1. Mark the base pegs so we don’t hit them with the tiller.
2. Moisten the dirt area. Till shallow to loosen it up. Keep tiller at least 1 foot away from the grass edge.
3. Truck dumps the dirt. We spread with landscape rakes, mat drag, or spike drag. Till it in to 3-4 inch depth.
4. Drag with the metal mesh drag to break up clumping and level the field.
5. Roll with a 1 ton roller to speed up the settling process and allow the field to firm up more quickly. Moisten.
6. Slowly drag twice with a mat drag to loosen the surface and level any low spots.
7. Rake or sweep all edges to remove any loose material from the turf to prevent lips from forming.


Mound - Reinforce the mound with approximately 100 unfired clay bricks.
1. Outline the landing areas and plateau.
2. Excavate 3 inches below the surface. Level and tamp firm.
3. Excavate the landing area and be 10 inches longer and wider than the longest stride of our pitchers.
4. Blocks should be within ½ inch of the surface. Wedge the blocks into position ½ inch below the rubber.
5. Fill around the blocks with adjacent soil and tamp to wedge together.
6. Tamp and water thoroughly several times for about an hour. Allow water to soak in. Tamp firmly between watering.
7. Apply a thin layer of powdered mound clay. Moisten and tamp.
8. Rake infield mix over the surface and hand drag. Moisten.
9. Cover with a plastic tarp to hold in moisture.


Batter Boxes - Reinforcing the batter boxes with unfired clay bricks.
1. This area needs to be raised a bit. Move some infield dirt here to raise it.
2. Use approximately 50 unfired clay bricks per batter’s box.
3. Same process as with the mound.
4. Outline the boxes and work from the inside out.
5. When done, roll it.


Remove hump between infield dirt and outfield grass
1. Either flatten with the tractor bucket or use a sod cutter to remove the sod and then till and spread the dirt underneath.
2. Spread baseball dirt here.
3. Till. Level with rakes and drag.
4. Roll.


Reduce raised area along infield turf perimeter
1. Aerate it the width of one pass. Aerate approximately 12 times. Remove the cores.
2. Mark lines and edge with sod cutter.
3. Cut a 3 inch wide and deep channel next to the turf.
4. Roll with the steam roller. Two to three passes.
5. Smooth dirt along the edge. Rake.

 

Estimating Baseball areas:
Using the diagram as the guide for a typical baseball field layout:

The infield dirt area is 12,293 square feet. This is based on a formula: 1/4 the area of a circle with a radius of 157 ft minus the grass area. At 1 inch deep, it takes 38 cubic yards of material to fill the dirt area.


The infield grass area is 7,056 square feet based on an approximate length of 84 feet. Grass seed is spread here at the rate of 5-6 pounds per 1000 sq ft. for over seeding. So, it takes about one 50 pound bag of grass seed. Fertilizer is spread at a rate of 50 lbs per 10,000 sq feet. So, it takes about one 50 pound bag of fertilizer. Sand and compost as a top dressing is spread at the rate of 6 tons per acre. The field would use approximately 2 tons for continuous top dressing and could probably use 4 tons for the initial process.


Baseball improvements budget plan

Item & Cost or Comment about the item
25 yards of infield baseball dirt: 50% clay and 50% lava dust 25 yards * $29/yd = $750?
200 unfired clay bricks at .50 each * 200 = $100
Tractor tiller, steam roller, aerator - either donated or about $400 to rent for a day

baseball field diagram

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